How should you store chocolates in hot weather?

Sac de plage avec ballotin de pralines Leonidas

Summer’s back and the temperatures are soaring. And what about your desire for sweet chocolates indulgences? That never went away! There really is no ‘right’ season for this little pleasure. Just because it’s hot doesn’t mean you have to go without. Leonidas, your favourite chocolatier, would never suggest otherwise. But there’s one thing bothering you… How should you store your chocolates during the summer?

Chocolats Leonidas posés sur une table en formant un cœur

Where should you store your chocolates at home?

Chocolate in itself is a delicacy. When it’s turned into chocolate confectionery, it’s even more fragile. Dark chocolate contains very little cocoa butter. In tablet form, it can be stored for around a year in a cool, dry place. But when its job is to coat a creamy ganache that’s rich in butter and fresh cream, when milk and fresh fruit decoration are added, you need to take great care.

Leonidas recommends two ways of keeping your chocolates safe. The first is very simple. The moment you take receipt of your ballotin or box of chocolates, eat the contents very quickly, in just a few days, or even hours. That may need a few people, so share with your family, colleagues or friends. Your delicious filled chocolates will thus live on for years in your memory, as a reminder of this magical moment of shared indulgence.

But if you need to keep your chocolates for longer than a week, especially in extreme heat, here’s our second tip. Filled chocolates remain stable at between 12 and 22°C, though ideally they should be stored at between 15 and 18°C. Above 30°C, they will start to melt, preferably in your mouth. Chocolates hate light and humidity too. Put them in an airtight metal or plastic box, then place the box in an enclosed space in a room that is shaded from the heat. Good options are a sideboard in your entrance hall, a shelf in a passageway or a cupboard in the cellar.

Always consume your Leonidas chocolates within a few weeks of purchase, and never store them for longer than 3 months because the flavours and aromas will deteriorate. You’ve got to admit, that would be a shame…

How should you store chocolates when it’s really too hot ?

It’s the height of summer, temperatures are sweltering and you can’t keep a room in your house cool. There is one solution left, to be used only in exceptional circumstances: the refrigerator or freezer. Although it will retain its taste qualities down to -30°C, remember that chocolate doesn’t like the cold. The cocoa butter it contains will crystallise and cover your chocolates in a whitish film known as fat bloom. To prevent this phenomenon, you should cool your chocolates gradually. Put them in the fridge before transferring them to the freezer. To enjoy your chocolates, do the reverse: take them out of the freezer and place them in the fridge.

However, you should never refreeze a product once it has been defrosted. So wrap your chocolates in small quantities beforehand and just take out as much as you need or want! Talking of packaging, use aluminium foil or cling film and place in airtight boxes. This will prevent your chocolates from absorbing the humidity that occurs on the inside of a refrigerator, and most importantly the smell of other foods. Although… a fish or cauliflower-flavoured Manon could be one to try!

How should you transport chocolates in the summer?

Visiting friends or your grandma this summer? You won’t go empty-handed, of course. You’ll take a beautiful box of Leonidas chocolates. To make sure it’s not become a chocolate spread by the time you arrive (that said, chocolate spread is good too!), place the box in an insulated bag out of direct sunlight. And eat the chocolates quickly once you are there, or follow our advice above!

It’s summer, it’s hot, and you have a sudden craving for Belgian chocolates? Take shelter in the refreshing cool of an air-conditioned Leonidas shop and treat yourself! Too hot to move? Order your favourite chocolates online in our e-shop.